tv Anderson Cooper 360 CNN December 14, 2012 5:00pm-6:00pm PST
sure everybody else is safe. >> some people were even like felt like they had a stomach ache. >> it's the most traumatic event i ever experienced or even considered. >> they let the students out and my daughter and her teacher out and as my daughter is walking out, she did see it. >> this is the worst school yard catastrophe in history. >> quite a few kids perished. >> beautiful little kids between the ages of 5 and 10 years old. >> the parents were waiting for their children to come out and thought they were still alive. >> how do you wrap your mind around something like this? >> the community trying to make sense of what their governor said was evil visited upon this community today. i'm ashleigh banfield in newtown, connecticut. anderson cooper 360 starts now.
>> thanks very much and good evening. there is only one story tonight. you know what it is. we have new details to tell but and we won't pretend we understand it any better than after it happened. it is a horror beyond words. kids as young as 5 years old. sadly to the names columbine and jonesboro, we have to add newtown, connecticut to virginia tech add sandy hook elementary, the second deadliest school shooting ever. 20 little kids and seven adults and the shooter who took his own life. all in a close-knit quiet community 90 minutes from new york. we will give you the latest information, but what we will not do is repeat the shooter's name over and over again. we don't want history to remember this murderer. we want history to remember the victims, the teachers and the children, those whose lives have been unfairly taken. we have a teamworking on the
tragedy and we have soledad o'brien on the scene. there vigils tonight. we will be checking in with her shortly. vigils to tell you about as the people come to grips with what happened. so much happened and so much we have learned since this morning. right now there is an active crime scene and many of the bodies still where they fell. still inside that school including that of the killer. we do at least tell you his name once. it's adam lanza. we won't be saying it much tonight. he was 20 and his mother taught at the school. she was found dead at the family home, unclear when or how she died. she bought the weapons her son used legally. the police in hoboken took the killer's older brother in for questioning. they do not label him a suspect and no word of why he is in custody. let's start at the beginning. >> the connecticut school district on lockdown.
>> the first word was chilling and it got worse. >> multiple fatalities involved in the shooting at the elementary school. >> with each new report the horror deepened. >> the reports say the number of dead closer to 30 than to 20 and sadly most of them are children. >> every detail and every fact brought more sadness. each fresh piece of information a part of the picture. a school, kindergarten through fourth grade, a sanctuary that was supposed to be a place of safety torn apart. >> she heard the intercom come on the school and heard a scream and heard a gunshot. two gunshots. then the school went into lockdown. >> a student's teenage big brother describing the sounds of gunmen on the loose at sandy hook. >> on and off duty troopers responded and with newtown police immediately upon arrival entered the school and began a complete shooter's search of the building. >> they arrived to carnage and
the killer said a source was dressed for battle in black fatigues and armed for mass murder with two pistols and a military-style rifle. in parts of the school, students were told to hide in corners. teachers risked their lives to pull boys and girls to safety. >> so grateful to the teacher who saved him. >> the teacher saved his life? >> she definitely did. he had bullets going by him and she grabbed him and another child and pulled them into a classroom. >> they were evacuated into a firehouse where frantic parents descended. >> i'm still terrify and in shock. i don't know everything that happened. i know there people missing that have been taken to the hospital. >> his son was okay and his keeper was alive as well. 20 other children and six adults were killed. the dead believed to include sandy hook's school psychologist and the principal. police discovered another adult victim, the gunman's mother
reportedly at home in newtown. the gunman too is dead. police fired no shots. a tight knit community including a nurse who rushed to help. shock and distraught. >> is it because of what you saw? >> one of the cops said it's the worst thing he had ever seen in his entire career, but when they told the parents, all the parents were waiting for their children to come out. they thought they were still alive. there was 20 parents who were told their children are dead. it was awful. >> awful and late today speaking for the nation, but also as a father, an emotional president obama fought back tears. >> this evening michelle and i will do what i know every parent in eamerica will do. hug our children tighter and tell them we love them and we will remind each other how deeply we love one another. families in connecticut cannot do that tonight.
they need all of us right now. >> we will bring you all of president obama's comments later on in this hour ahead. soledad o'brien is on the scene with jay paul vance with the connecticut state police. soledad? >> reporter: joining him is george sinko. you spend a long time for the full day on the scene. you came back from being inside the scene. you will process the scene through sunday. what does that mean exactly? >> a lot of work goes into a criminal investigation like this. the priority like that is identifying the victims. we said 18 children in there and six adults. the shooter. we need to positive lie identify which is which. the medical examiner's office is with them now in that process. we are hopeful we can accomplish that by sometime in the early morning hours. >> do you mean to tell me the
bodies of the children and those killed are still where they fell? >> that's correct. yes. >> they will be there. have you allowed the parents to see their children. >> no. this is a crime scene. we need to identify them. we have a tentative identification, but we need to positively identify them and we are doing it as quickly as we possibly can. >> you talked in other press conferences about the partners you have in this investigation. can you fill me in on what they are telling me about what's happening in hoboken where we know the shooter's brother has been interviewed by officials there. we know that the shooter's father has been talking to law enforcement as well. >> we have not identified anyone. we will not identify anyone yet but we are working with partners as needed. as they cross the line and determine they need information out of state regardless of what it might be. we will get them to accomplish that task for us. there had been issues in new
jersey and other states where our investigators have contacted the agencies to assist us in this case. >> let me ask you a question if i can. we have been told that the person who is believed to be the shooter, now deceased, in the building still, had no criminal record as far as we know. there often things we call known to police. a family had been contacting police and you as a police officer would know them. can you tell me more about the family. >> at this time we are not going to comment on the family as the lieutenant said. we are not confirming identities until we are sure positively who we have here. we are going to try to do that tomorrow. >> is there any narrative that you have been able to piece together about what exactly happened? we have information about the weaponry and about the victims. we have information about people in different states now being questioned. is there any story that answers
the big question which is why? >> i don't think so. that's something that we will do to work together. we will leave no stone unturned. we'll go back and uncover every bit of information and try to answer the question as to why. we consider an investigation like this foob r to be massive. it's like eye puzzle. we have to put the piecesing to to draw a picture as to how and why this occurred. >> there have been report that is the shooter and you are not naming him, but he has been named in reports had a personality disorder. or in some descriptions a mental disorder. you can confirm that? >> we can't. we can't discuss at this point in time anything to do with any of the victims or the deceased whatsoever until we are prepared to do so. we anticipate that will be tomorrow. for some reasons we will withhold that information. >> when will you allow parents
to go and get the bodies of their children. >> as soon as we can confirm. we are very early into the investigation. it's obviously very sensitive and we have to make sure we are right. >> for must be horrible and brutal for people who are waying to see those they lost. thank you for talking to us. the state police and with the newtown police as well. you can imagine the tone here is just terrible and so sad and just fraught with grief as well. we will talk to people who some are still grappling and trying to understand what exact exactly happened here today. i want to send it back to you. >> i'm not sure it's something we can understand. we can get as many details as we can. we are trying to do that with as much respect for those in mourning and for that community as possible. it is impossible to fathom what the people of newtown are going through and in particular the parents and the siblings and the family members of the children whose little lives were taken
today. so many lives lost and so many more lives forever changed. friends and neighbors even complete strangers have gathered and continue to at this hour to hold one another and cry and pray and to remember. this a vigil at a local church. jason carroll joins us now. you have been outside. what are people saying to you? what has the mead been like? >> reporter: here at st. rose lima church, the people and the hundreds who are gathered outside simply because there wasn't enough room inside the church. they are stunned. no other word for it. they are stunned and hurt. they are here because they are leaning on each other for support. when you are hurt so badly like this, you turn to your loved ones and family and in some cases you turn to your faith. that's what's happening outside as this vigil continues through the night. in talking to the people here and trying to get to where we were, we passed a starbucks.
a woman got out of a car and she was in tears. we went by a restaurant. a woman was outside there and her husband and a young boy were very upset. as we came down the road where the church is, i saw a woman who was talking down the street and looked like she was stunned. completely stunned. she was crying and wandering down the street. even before we got close to the scene of where it happened, you knew how deeply hurt this community was by what happened. that's what we are seeing outside now. this is a close skmunt it's no surprise that the people knew some of these people at the school. one man knew the principal, dawn hochsprung and how much she loved the school and the children. i want you to listen to what he had to say about her.
let me tell you that in terms of what he had to say, it was that this was a woman who cared very deeply not just about the school, but she worked there since june of 2010 and she cared about the students and her job. it was tough for him to take and that's why he and so many others are here tonight. anderson? >> i know you got a chance to talk to the deacon in the community as well. . >> that's true. the deacon is helping out individuals tonight and before things got under way. i said what have you been doing and he said nearly 100 people have come to the church doors so far looking for support. looking for comfort in any sort of way. he talked about one 6-year-old girl who he knew who was killed in the shooting and how deeply that had affected him. not only is he hurt, but he has
to be the pillar of strength and provide strength while he is trying to heal. anderson? >> what can you say to a parent who lost a child? jason, thanks. as word spread so did the shock and the horror and now of course the grieving. >> you can never be prepared for this kind of incident. what happened skw transpired at the school building will leave a mark on this community and every family impacted. i only ask that our fellow citizens here and around the world who offered their assistance remember all of the victims in their prayers. >> his main response is the investigation with local authorities. we are echl sighing we do not
want to give undue attention to the killer who committed the murders and be part of helping history remember his name. we want the victims to be remembered. we do believe it's important to understand whatever we can about this person and the crime. how we came to this point. susan candiotti is handling coverage of the investigation. what's the latest from law enforcement? >> we are trying to get down to more about the shooter. adam lanza was 20 years old and we know according to the sources here's armed with three guns and wearing black battle fatigues and a military vest. where did he get the three guns and what kind were they? they were three hand guns, a glock and a sig sauer and a bush master. this is a semi automatic gun and we have photographs of the type of weapon it is.
we understand from our sources that these guns were all registered and belonged to his mother. his mother who was also killed. the mother's body was found in the house, a family home here in this area. we don't know much more about adam lanza. we know that his brother ryan was a bit older at 24 years old. he was taken in to custody for questioning. he is not called a suspect, but he was in hoboken, new jersey when they brought him in for questioning. that's where he lives. they wanted to try to find out what if anything he knew and what he could tell them about his brother. what information he can give about his background and police also questioned their father. he still lives in this area. he is divorced from his wife who was one of the victims here and remarried. he too is being questioned to
shed light on adam lanza and why this tragedy happened. anderson? >> susan, thanks very much. we are starting to hear inspiring reports about how the teachers handled this unimaginable trauma. kaitlyn is a first grade teacher and rushed 15 children, 6 and 7-year-olds into a small bathroom and barricaded it with a bookshelf and said there were bad guys and they had to wait for the good guys. when the children started crying, she would told the faces in her hands and say it was going to be okay and said show me her smile. the kids told her heart breaking things and said they wanted to go home for christmas and hug their moms. clearly an extraordinary teacher told abc news what happened next. >> i need you to know that i love you all very much. that it's going to be okay. i thought that was the last thing they were ever going to hear and i thought we were all
going to die. i don't know if that's okay. teachers. i wanted them to know someone loved them and that to be one of the last things they heard. not the gunfire in the hall way. it was so horrible. >> kaitlyn said she heard the gunfire stop and when the police came and started knocking, she wanted to put their badges under the door. the teacher protecting her students with everything she had. tweet me about this. i will be tweeting as well. even though nothing can explain this, a search for motive and remembering the fallen including sandy hooks's principal who in addition her job was raising five children of her own.
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something happens so close to home. it's like i think i'm still in shock to be honest. >> a lot of people are feeling the same tonight. all-around the world. the massacre in sandy hook is the deadliest school shooting in american history and all the words spoken and i'm speaking tonight and will speak later tonight all sound so small in the face of this horror. 20 children and six adults were alive last night getting ready for a day of school and tonight they are gone. president obama spoke to the nation earlier and we played some of his comments and we think it's worth hearing all of what he said. >> this afternoon i spoke to governor malloy and fbi director muller. i offered my condolences on behalf of the nation and made it clear he will have every single resource he needs to investigate the heinous crime, care for the
victims, counsel their families. we have endured too many of these tragedies in the past few years and each time i learn the news, i react not as a president, but as anybody else would. as a parent. that was especially true today. i know there is not a parent in america who doesn't feel the same overwhelming grief that i do. the majority of those who died today were children. beautiful little kids between the ages of 5 and 10 years old. they had their entire lives ahead of them. birthdays, graduations, weddings, kids of their own.
among the fallen were also teachers, men and women who devoted their lives to helping our children fulfill their dreams. so our hearts are broken today. for the parents and grandparents, sisters and brothers of these little children and for the families of the adults who were lost. our hearts are broken for the parents of the survivors as well. for as blessed as they are to have their children home tonight, they know that their children's innocence has been torn away from them too early and flower no words that will ease their pain. as a country we have been through this too many times. whether it's an elementary school in newtown or a shopping mall in oregon. or a temple in wisconsin or a
movie theater in aurora or a street corner in chicago. these neighborhoods are our neighborhoods. these children are our children. we will have to coming to and take meaningful action to prevent more tragedies like regardless of the politics. this evening michelle and i will do what i know every parent in america will do which is hug our children a little tighter and will tell them we love them. and we will remind each other how deeply we love one another. families in connecticut cannot do that tonight. they need all of us right now. in our days to come, that community needs us to be at our best as americans and i will do everything in my power as president to help. because nothing can fill the space of a lost child or loved one, all of us can extend a hand
to those in need to remind them that we are there for them and that we are praying for them and that the love they felt for those they lost endures not just in their memories, but also in ours. may god bless the memory of the victims and in the words of scripture, heal the brokenhearted and bind up their wounds. >> police have not released the names of the victims. the children's little bodies still inside that school and the parents have not been able to see them yet. as we learn who they are, when it's appropriate we will focus on their lives and their memory. as the victims, we want history to remember and honor. the school's principal and psychologists are among the dead. here's what we learned about both women. 47-year-old dawn hochsprung,
jason carroll mentioned her. she became the principal back in 2010. she arrived with 12 years of experience as a school administrator and she was raising two daughters and three stepdaughters. those who worked with hochsprung said she was passionate about her job and expert on curriculum, but fun, but firm leader. one friend said she was the kind of person you want to be educating your kids and the kids loved her. little kids know when someone cares about them and that was her. she was write being her love of reading on twitter and posting photos about events and developments at sandy hook. she tweeted welcome being our kinders this morning, 74 new opportunities to inspire lifelong learning. she was apparently talking about the new kindergarten class. she recently installed a new security system at the school when the safeguards all visitors had to ring a door bell and wait to be buzzed in after the doors
locked at 9:30. it is not known how the gunman got in. we don't have photographs of mary sherlock. she died as well. she was a school psychologist and 56 years old. she was at the school for 18 years and held an under grad degree in psychology and a six-year professional degree. they have two grown daughters. the oldest works as a high school chorus teacher. ma mary sherlock, we will remember you. soledad? >> anderson, i'm with christine wilford, her son is a second grader at the school and she had a terrifying day. how are you doing now? >> it's still processing. it's scary. no words. >> how is your son doing?
are you encouraging him to talk and share or trying to take his mind off the terrible things he witnessed and experienced? >> we have done a little bit of each. trying to spoil him and take his mind off of it and let him play ps 3 and trying to talk and process with him. letting them know when we found out about other children that he knows. >> you got an electronic alert. this is the most terrifying thing. >> my husband and i were sitting here and a neighbor was over. we got a robo call that all schools were in lockdown due to a reported shooting. we immediately got online and my neighbor called her husband who said he heard it was sandy hook and we saw it online and hopped in the car and headed to the
school. >> the school was on lockdown. what exactly does that mean? >> i'm not sure completely what it means. when i got there all of the children that had been evacuated in the firehouse. >> how is your son doing and how are the kids holding up? >> it varied. my son seemed to be okay. he said mom, i'm okay and i'm safe. he gave me a hug and a lot of children were crying and scared. >> what did he describe had happened? >> he said he heard what sounded like large pans falling. loud noises. he said his teacher stepped outside the classroom and came back in and locked the door. he had them start reading quietly. >> how much time went by between when that happened and when he got to you? >> i don't know. he is not able to piece how much time actually passed.
he just said after a little while a police officer came and took them out of the building and brought them to the firehouse. >> we know that the principal had installed a system where you have to be buzzed in. >> yes. it's been that way for the two years we have been here. you had to ring a door bell and be let in. the office is right in front of those doors. they can look out and see who is at the door. >> was there a reason for that. it's typical in big cities, but communities that are rural, it's a little bit of a rarity. >> it's just the safety of our children is taken very seriously. it's a fairly large school between 500 and 600 students there. they want to keep control and know who is in the building with our children. >> i was talking to the state police and they said that they were processing the scene and children were still inside. how do you explain to their son
whap about his classmate? >> we are a fairly religious family and we just talked about that they have gone to heaven. to be with jesus and that's about all we can say. we talk about you are not going to see them anymore and they are not going to be around. you really just struggle to find the words. >> you should know everyone is seng well wishes not just to you, but your community as a whole. so many people asked me to pass that along. >> we are a strong community. it is strong family community with a lot of love. we will get through it somehow, some way. >> let's go back to anderson. >> thank you very much. more now on sandy hook's principal. we just told you about her a short time ago.
she is a professor at sage graduate school. dawn was one of her students. what can you tell us about dawn. you knew her. what was she like? >> i have known dawn for the past several months. this is the first course she took in the doctoral program. she was a person who loved the work she did. the course that we are doing is on leadership. she loved leading children to their futures. she had great potential to ton make a difference. a lot of our course is about courage. we read that and this morning i read one of the papers that she committed a few days ago. it was referencing overcoming fear.
it has been an example of facing fear in the ultimate situation. >> when you read that paper this morning, did you know what happened? i was in the process of greating papers and took a break. i heard about it. then went back to the papers and if thissy quote from her work just popped at me. she was actually in this paper speaking about overcoming fear. facing one's fear and acting in spite of fear. i appreciate you being with us. we are trying to focus on the victims and limiting the use of the killer's name. we don't want to repeat it over and over. i don't want to give encouragement to anyone elsy
that they can be famous through murder. we are trying to learn what we can as to what led this person to murder. what are we learning? >> having covered so many of these, it is playing ought almost in a sickening routine. a shooter with possible mental health issues and a family trying to deal with those issues. powerful guns easily accessed and the outburst of violence. the 20-year-old shooter beginning to play out exactly in that order. here's what we do know. the shooter had an older brother that reportedly told us that the shooter had a personality disorder. he mentioned autism. cnn heard the same information from a man who called himself a friend of the shooter in newtown where the shooter lived and his mother taught school. we can confirm the gun susan told you about, the two hand guns, the semi automatic rifle was legally owned by the shooter's mother now deceased. as was standard, people are
shocked that the particular shooter could have been involved in anything as is with the case of one of the shooter's former classmates and school bus driver. take a listen. >> just a kid. >> just a kid? >> just a kid. >> never antisocial? >> no. >> trouble maker? >> no, definitely not. >> noticeable? did he blend into the background? >> yeah. nothing that would warrant any of this. >> he went after his mom and class of kids. can you wrap your mind about that? >> no, i cannot. i don't know what would do anything like this. >> your general sense is what? >> this is unspeakable. i first heard about it -- i'm still in shock. excuse me a moment. i want to go.
>> he was a nice kid. very polite. she raised very nice boys to me. that's why i think it's a shock to even know them and realize who they are and who he did. you can't understand what happened. that he snapped. he took such innocent lives. >> so anderson, what can we expect as we learned in the case of the virginia tech shooting and shooting of congresswoman gabby giffords. this year's mass killing at the movie theater in aurora. expect to see in hindsight, multiple warning signs may be dangerous and ignored and practice session, obsessions that were not taken seriously or the family didn't know how to handle it. in the end they will never have an answer or explanation that is good enough for the victim's families. it is just so senseless.
anderson? >> always mental health issues that we are starting to hear about as we pointed out. so often it's hard for parents to get help even if they know their child has a problem because of laws on the books. one of the things we will be looking at. gun laws, you were saying all the guns were legally acquired. connecticut has some of the toughest gun laws there. >> already calls for we need to strengthen the gun laws, but people need to look at what the gun laws are. they are very, very strict, anderson. it's what led them to know the registration of the guns. connecticut has their own registry. the hand guns, you have to have a certificate to possess those guns and that goes along with with a class you have to take and you have to be over 21 years. if that rifle was an assault rifle, many people can know that connecticut bans assault rifles.
the ones that were legally possessed were grandfathered in, but those two would need to be registered with the state. as we know, these guns were registered with the mother of the shooter. >> appreciate the reporting as well. with us now is denise. her second grader was in school this morning. i cannot imagine what this day has been like for you and your child. how is your child and how are you doing? >> i think everyone is coping as best as they possibly can. it's shocking when it happens anywhere. we are all trying to wrap our arms around the situation as best as we can. >> does your daughter want to talk about it with you or are you encouraging her to or how are you handling this? a lot of parents around the world are trying to figure out what to say to their child.
>> you know, the hard thing for me is i'm a new yorker and i guess i'm accustomed to manhattan and always telling me kids to be careful. i guess you never expect it to happen in your school. at the end of the day, you just let her talk. she mentioned quite a bit about the principal who many of us worked with. i worked with her personally with my business. that is one person i know we lost on a personal level. i know they are going to have the counsellors at the school today. they were all welcome to go there. if they need to speak to somebody, they will. >> has your daughter said much about what she saw or heard?
>> she did mention that she did of course hear gunshots. they were on the same floor. her teacher managed to take two children out of the hall way and pull them into the classroom. lock the door and move everybody over to the other side of the room. it was very confusing as it would be in any of these cases to go and pick up your child once we figured out that everything was dispatched to sandy hook elementary. i was one of the first parents there along with a friend of mine. we figured out what was going on and i ran over there. they were smart to get them out of the building and move them over to the firehouse. you can see that my daughter's teacher was visibly upset as well as many of the children there. she did a very heroic thing and pulled two kids out of the hall way and shoved them in the class and locked the door. the kids are going to suffer
from this like everything else. it's a psychological event that will take time for healing. as long as everyone gets the proper help, it's not something you shake off easily and not for little people. we lost a lot of babies today in this town. there a lot of very sad families. as everyone can think, you never think it's going to happen, but basically it happens all over the world at this point. we have to be cognizant of mental health and cog zandt of gun control in my eyes. to take your children to school, you have to worry about someone blowing them all up. it's very, very unfortunate, but unfortunately it's our reality these days. . >> denise, i'm sorry that that reality was visited upon your
daughter today and everybody else. i wish you strength and peace in the difficult days ahead. thank you for talking tonight. >> thank you so much, anderson. >> obviously witnessing the massacre in the school has been -- how can you say obviously, deemly traumatic experience for those who survived and hearing about it in the united states and around the world. it can be difficult to understand. they have questions and parents have questions about what to say. we will talk with sanjay gupta ahead. [ sniffs ] i have a cold.
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images after the shooting that occurred was parents awaiting in the firehouse for word of their children. many waiting for hours and finally being told that if they hadn't had word by then, their little ones were lost. so many families tonight in deep mourning. unspeakable grief. soledad is live on the scene. soledad? >> reporter: anderson, the gunman's mother is a kindergarten teacher at the school found dead at the family home not far from where i am. ali is covering that part of the story for us. >> reporter: we are on the street where the shooter lived with his mother. there is a lot of activity around here where that police car is. none has anything to do with the residents. many of the residents were asked to leave earlier today while the police made this a crime scene. you can see the yellow tape. the cars and there were a couple of reporters here a moment ago.
all media are trying to get to the house down there. the police have closed this off. these are large houses around here and all of them have christmas decorations and it's a quiet neighborhood. no street lights at all. all the lights you see here are from the media. not a lot of neighbors responding and the reporters are trying to get a sense of the family and who they were. we have seen people looking out their windows and there families back in. there is a very quiet neighborhood. about 2 1/2 miles from the school and around here people who did speak to the media or did comment on this said they didn't know the family. this is an area where they are now coming together in their grief and trying to make sense of this. this is about the most uncommon thing you would see in a neighborhood like this. no real action here. the police said they won't have more comments until 8:00 in the
morning eastern time which is when they might be able to give a positive identification for the shooter. they haven't done that yet. at least there is a sense that once they do that, they may be able to put more of the puzzle piecesing to together. you can see no lights and just that police car making sure no one goes near that house. >> thank you for that update. there is another terrible piece of the puzzle to talk about tonight. it is the gunman's brother who was taken in for questioning in hoboken, new jersey. live for us in hoboken with more. what do we know about exactly why the brother was taken in? >> there has been a lot of confusion about the brother and why he was taken in. he is 24 years old and the brother lives in an apartment behind me.
a five-story building made up of two and three-bedroom apartments. they led him into a police car in handcuffs and looking dazed and a little bit confused and very, very glum which you can imagine is understandable given the situation. not clear exactly why. i did talk to a police officer as i was walking on the scene who said there was this notion that the shooting suspect had his brother's id on him and holding his brother's id for some reason and there may have been initial confusion and police took the brother into custody and cnn learned and we have been talking to two roommates of the brother who are not believed to have a connection to the suspect at all. on the scene where i was earlier, it is teaming with law enforcement activity. jersey city police and a bomb squad that never really entered the building and the fbi. they did remove some colors from
the apartment. apparently a computer. we are not sure if he is still in custody or not. it has been a strange situation. it is very, very quiet here and almost no law enforcement presence at all. that does give you a sense that this is no longer a huge story of interest in the investigation. soledad? >> reporter: thanks, john for that update. back to anderson. >> soledad, thanks. everyone who lived through the shooting saw and heard things that no one ever should, especially kids. as president obama said, their innocence was torn away. a lot of people are wondering how the kids can be affected by what they witnessed. a lot of people want to know as parent what is to say to their kid who is were watching or may have heard about it. sanjay gupta joins me now. what do you think the biggest concerns are for children who witnessed the shootings or were in the school when this happened?
>> children can suffer ptsd as well, post traumatic stress disorder and we don't think about it as much. this is so unprecedented it's hard to have answers. for the next several days, there will be real concerns about these kids. typically it's short-lived. that is the good news. sometimes it can proceed to nightmares and anxiety and panic. it's important to get help early. if you get help early, it's much more predictive of how they do in the long run. there a lot of studies and one thing i found interesting and it has to do with tonight. that is sleep. if a child is getting sleep tonight, it tends to be a powerful predictor of how they will cope. kids that will be the most vulnerable are kids who are closer to the violence and had things going on in their own homes ahead of time makes them more at risk. don't forget something that you and i have talked about. survivor's guilt.
kids who are alive and wonder why they are. that's something that people will be mindful of. >> it's not the immediate trauma of hearing or witnessing this, but the long-term loss of some of the their friends and playmates and at that age, that's a hard thing to understand. one of the reasons that counsellors will be available starting tomorrow, are kids more at risk of suffering ptsd than adults? >> both can suffer, but the difference is that with children as young as this, they don't verbalize it the same way. you may have developmental delays that are unusual. you could have regression overall and temper tantrums. there's the things that may not fit exactly with what you expect with ptsd, but it can be more vague. with adults, hyper vigilance and quick reactions to things and reliving the trauma and the
horror over and over again. obviously of course the parents of the children who died are at most risk from all of this. >> sanjay, appreciate it. we'll be right back. santho, ho, ho!anta! santa! want to see some magic? watch this! merry chr... (crash) ow! i landed on my keys. did you get that? oh yeah. that was amazing. here you go. that was a fun trick! see? santa's okay.
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. >> it feels like a nightmare. you never in a million years would think you drop you're child off at school and hugs and kisses and see you at the end of the day. you never know. are you still going to -- 20 minutes from now, you don't know what's going to happen. you count your blessings every day for what you have. >> i'm back with soledad o'brien who is live in connecticut. i have been in that town. it's a beautiful area. the last place you would expect something like this. i know you have been talking to a lot of families. asking how they are doing sounds so hollow, but what are people saying? >> they are just stunned. parents have coming and bringing their kids with them. they are stunned that they are so blessed they survived and children survive and they were
able to dodge a terrible thing and yet they know so many families in the community did not have children who survived. inside the scene of law enforcement that is being processed. the parents cannot be with their children and can never be. there is a terrible horror behind it all. why and what drove the shooter to do this. so many questions need to be answered and probably as law enforcement told us will be answered, it just takes time. it takes investigation. that's absolutely no relief to anybody here. >> the idea that the kids are still in there. it's such a horrible thing. i appreciate your sensitive reporting. we saw a lit of it at the top of the hour. the vigil in newtown, connecticut. a community shattered. they cannot hold all the people who want to be there and say
prayers and add their hopes and their remembrances for the family who is lost loved ones. we add to that vigil our prayers and thoughts to the parents and the children and families and friends. so many hearts are with you tonight. >> i would like to share a letter from his holiness, pope benedict xvi. i was informed of the shooting at handy hook elementary in newtown, connecticut. i convey my heart felt and prayers to the victims and families. to all of those in the community of newtown and especially the parish of st. rose of lima. >> i have no words that make the pain of what happened today easy to bear. i am heartbroken as i know all of you are. there is nothing more hurtful and tragic than the loss of innocence, but no